Communities of Color and Cervical Cancer

Not equal. Not surprised?

Today, women of color are diagnosed with cervical cancer at a later stage than white women, and after a diagnosis don’t live as long as white women.

Let’s start with a family portrait

This graph shows new cervical cancer cases per 100,000 women in the United States during 1998–2003. (API means Asian/Pacific Islander).

For more information on this graph, go to

The situation is getting better

Cervical cancer used to be the leading cause of cancer death for women in the United States. Black and Hispanic women were hit particularly hard. Over the past 40 years, as the number of new cases and deaths has decreased, the numbers for all groups are slowly moving together.

This graph on the right tells the story of cervical cancer death rates in the U.S. from 1975 to 2005.

For more information on this graph, go to

We have to change this

Communities of color are less likely to seek medical treatment. Even when they do so, it’s often less available. When treated, they are less likely to obtain first-class care at every step of illness. The bottom line: Compared to the white population, communities of color don’t live as long, and while living don’t live as well.

Tamika & Friends is in the business of changing this unacceptable situation. We are dedicated to outreach to all women, but take particular care to spread the word to women of color.

Our tip to you: If you are a woman of color, you deserve the best testing and best treatment. Do not accept substandard healthcare for cervical cancer or anything else. Make yourself heard.

Some other resources for women of color are at:


Tamika & Friends is supported by an unrestricted educational grant from QIAGEN.